Mr. and Mrs. Dog by Donald McCaig

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Synopsis

The New York Times–bestselling author Donald McCaig
has established an expansive literary career, founded equally on books about working sheepdogs and
the Civil War novels Jacob’s Ladder and Rhett Butler’s
People,
the official sequel to Gone with the Wind.


In his new book, Mr. and Mrs. Dog, McCaig draws on twenty-five years
of experience raising sheepdogs to vividly describe his—and his dogs June and
Luke’s—unlikely progress toward and participation in the World Sheepdog Trials in
Wales.

McCaig engagingly chronicles the often grueling experience—through
rain, snow, ice storms, and brain-numbing heat—of preparing and trialing Mrs. Dog, June,
"a foxy lady in a slinky black-and-white peignoir," and Mr. Dog, Luke, "a
plain worker—no flash to him." Along the way, he relays sage advice from his decades
spent talking with America’s most renowned dog experts, from police-dog trainers to
positive-training gurus.

As readers of McCaig’s novels will expect,
Mr. and Mrs. Dog delivers far more than straightforward dog-training tips.
Revealing an abiding love and respect for his dogs, McCaig unveils the life experiences that set him
on the long road to the Welsh trial fields. Starting with memories of his first dog, Rascal, and
their Montana roadtrip in a ’48 Dodge, McCaig leads us into his thirties, when he abandons his
New York advertising career to move to a run-down Appalachian sheep farm in the least populous
county in Virginia. This 1960s agrarian adventure ultimately brings McCaig, Luke, and June to the
Olympics of sheepdog trials. In his narration of one man’s love for his dogs, McCaig offers a
powerful portrayal of the connection between humans and their animal companions.

 

About Donald McCaig

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Donald McCaig, a New York Times–bestselling novelist, poet, and essayist, is the author of Nop's Trials, Nop's Hope, The Dog Wars, A Useful Dog (Virginia), Eminent Dogs, Dangerous Men, Last Poems, and An American Homeplace (Virginia). A sheepdog trainer, he lives with his wife, Anne, and their nine dogs on a farm in the western mountains of Virginia.
 
Published April 15, 2013 by University of Virginia Press. 208 pages
Genres: Crafts, Hobbies & Home, Travel. Non-fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Mr. and Mrs. Dog

Kirkus Reviews

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Novelist and essayist McCaig (The Dog Wars: How the Border Collie Battled the American Kennel Club, 2007, etc.) chronicles his experiences training sheepdogs for companionship and competition.

Feb 04 2013 | Read Full Review of Mr. and Mrs. Dog

Publishers Weekly

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Sheepdog trainer and novelist, poet, and essayist McCaig (Eminent Dogs) takes more than a few detours en route to describing his experiences in the World Trial, the “only truly international” competit

Feb 11 2013 | Read Full Review of Mr. and Mrs. Dog

Kirkus Reviews

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Novelist and essayist McCaig (The Dog Wars: How the Border Collie Battled the American Kennel Club, 2007, etc.) chronicles his experiences training sheepdogs for companionship and competition.

Mar 18 2013 | Read Full Review of Mr. and Mrs. Dog

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